Katie's Hope (Chapter Five, page 1 of 15)

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The demons couldn't get near Sasha so long as he had the coffin holding his father. Jade watched from the brush nearby. Sasha sat on top of the sarcophagus and looked around, smug in how safe he was sitting on top of the coffin. The forest was full of demons. Most had attacked the castle while Darkyn's personal guard went after Sasha. Jade hadn't wanted to come; he'd asked a personal favor of Darkyn not to come. Darkyn had laughed and dragged him.

Jade's insides still churned at the sight of the demons and Immortals fighting. Technically, this was Sasha's doing, for he had dragged the coffin out of the protected crypt and left the Immortals exposed. This fact did little to assuage Jade's guilt when he saw the slaughter around the place he'd once called home.

"Where's your master, fools?" Sasha shouted to the forest.

"I'm here," Darkyn's voice boomed from a good hundred meters away, the nearest the demon could come.

"What of our deal?" Sasha demanded. "I gave you Kris and the Immortals."

Darkyn's chuckle filled the air around them, and Jade watched Sasha's face turn from expectant to furious.

"So that bitch Jade betrayed me," Sasha muttered. "No matter. I can sit here all day, Darkyn, and you can't come near me."

The sounds of fighting from the direction of the castle made Jade sweat. He hadn't wanted all the Immortals to die, just the ones that hurt him. He shifted in the brush, wishing he could've found a better way to draw out Kris and Sasha than by sacrificing everyone.

"I can't, but Jade can," Darkyn said, unconcerned. "Jade's a coward and a fool!"

"He tricked you, didn't he?"

Sasha sneered in response. He rose and began to pace, the first sign of his anxiety. Jade's hands were sweaty as he drew a machete. He'd crossed the line. There was no going back.

"Jade, kill him and bring me the vial," Darkyn ordered.

Jade closed his eyes, drew a deep breath, and stepped from the forest. Sasha was armed with two daggers and lowered himself into a fighting stance. Jade had trained under Kris, the greatest of the Immortal warriors, and knew Sasha to be a lazy fighter. His first few blows were deflected, but the third slashed Sasha's arm.

"Wait, Jade," Sasha said, surprised. "We can make a deal, you and I." "You have nothing I want."

"I am still an Ancient. I will make you my mate."

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